Soapbox Update: Protect the clean water rule for fish and families

From the National Wildlife Federation:

The Trump Administration has just taken the first of two steps to remove protections from waters that have been safeguarded by the Clean Water Act for more than 40 years. EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt has moved to repeal the widely-supported Clean Water Rule and replace it with a new rule that rolls back the Clean Water Act, threatening critical fish and wildlife habitat as well as the drinking water sources for 117 million Americans.


Take action TODAY by urging the Environmental Protection Agency to maintain a strong Clean Water Act for wildlife.


The 2015 Clean Water Rule restores Clean Water Act protections to small streams and wetlands that serve as fish and wildlife habitat and provide drinking water for 1 in 3 Americans. These waters are spawning habitat, trout streams, and nesting habitat for more than half of the waterfowl in North America. The Clean Water Rule is backed by science, extensive public input, and the law.


In contrast, the rushed plan to replace the Clean Water Rule with a new rule will provide little opportunity for the many clean water stakeholders and affected communities to voice their support for a strong Clean Water Act. It contradicts the law and science and ignores the robust public record in support of the 2015 Clean Water Rule.


The proposed rulemaking could mean the loss of Clean Water Act protections for nearly 60% of streams in the lower 48 states that do not flow year-round and could threaten protections for most of the 110 million acres of wetlands in the continental United States.


This would have devastating effects on fish and wildlife and outdoor recreation, not to mention the streams that help provide our drinking water.


Add your voice and take action now to tell the EPA that you support a strong federal Clean Water Act. Tell the EPA that you oppose any action to repeal the Clean Water Rule and efforts to diminish the common-sense protections that have safeguarded our nation’s waters for decades.

National Wildlife Federation’s Action page here!


Comment: [include docket number when available] Docket number is:

Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OW-2017-0203

[ALSO: we want to code the alert so that it goes to members of Congress as well as Administrator Pruitt]

Dear Administrator Pruitt,


We all depend on clean water – for drinking, swimming, fishing, wildlife-watching, and our way of life. I oppose the Environmental Protection Agency’s and Army Corps of Engineers’ proposal to repeal the 2015 Clean Water Rule. I also oppose your plan to weaken common-sense safeguards that protect our water resources via a new rulemaking action. These rollbacks put the waters that we depend on at risk.


The widely-supported Clean Water Rule helps the Clean Water Act achieve its goals by clarifying which waters are protected by the Act. It better protects millions of acres of small streams and wetlands that serve as critical fish and wildlife habitat as well as provide the drinking water for 117 million Americans. The rule is guided by sound science, extensive and transparent public input, and the law.


The Administration’s plan to repeal the Clean Water Rule and replace it with a new rule that rolls back Clean Water Act protections will contradict the law and science that is the foundation for the Clean Water Act successes of the past four decades. It will also remove protections for millions of wetlands and stream miles across the United States – waters that filter pollution, help protect us from floods, provide essential fish and wildlife habitat, and support a robust outdoor recreation economy. We rely on these protections to safeguard our nation’s wildlife, drinking water, jobs, health, and outdoor economy.


Any proposal to revisit the 2015 Clean Water Rule should be based in the Act’s purpose, history, and text, and the best scientific evidence available about water bodies’ functions. Additionally, any rulemaking should be as inclusive of diverse stakeholder opinions as the Clean Water Rule and should be built on a scientific foundation that is as robust as the Clean Water Rule’s is.


I oppose this effort to repeal the 2015 Clean Water Rule and attack the safeguards that have protected our nation’s waters for decades. I urge the Administration to withdraw this proposal immediately. Any potential revision to the 2015 Clean Water Rule must help achieve the goals of the Clean Water Act, and must be based on a rulemaking process that is robust, inclusive, transparent, science-based, and legally sound.

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